Tarran Mackenzie claimed his first pole position in the Bennetts British Superbike Championship at Silverstone this afternoon, holding off his hard-charging team-mate Jason O’Halloran by 0.054s whilst Scott Redding fired himself onto the front row ahead of his race debut tomorrow (Sunday).
There was a dramatic start to the opening Datatag Qualifying session of the season for Josh Brookes, who suffered a technical problem with his Be Wiser Ducati, causing a brief red flag delay and the 2015 champion will start 18th on the grid for tomorrow’s opening race.
It was a close battle to qualify for Q2 with 24 riders covered by just 0.728s and the first rider to narrowly miss out was Quattro Plant – JG Speedfit Kawasaki’s Ben Currie in the closing seconds of the opening session.
In Q2 there was another incredible battle to be inside the top nine to qualify for the final Q3 stage; the Honda Racing pairing narrowly missed out on making the cut, just 0.056s putting Andrew Irwin the first in the drop zone adrift of Christian Iddon, who held ninth for Tyco BMW.
When Q3 got underway Mackenzie was straight out of pitlane and instantly on the attack for a flying lap, setting the benchmark early ahead of O’Halloran and Josh Elliot as OMG Racing Suzuki qualified for the final qualifying stage for the first time.
Redding meanwhile had been building momentum during his first Datatag Qualifying experience and he moved into sixth, before a final attack put him into third and on the front row ahead of his much-anticipated race debut.
Elliot was able to hold off his team-mate Luke Mossey to head the second row as the OMG Racing Suzuki celebrated their strongest qualifying performances to date ahead of Dan Linfoot on the Santander Salt TAG Yamaha.
Tommy Bridewell and the Oxford Racing Ducati team will start in seventh place after their hard work to rebuild the stricken machine after yesterday’s crash with Christian Iddon and Luke Stapleford completing the top nine.
Bennetts British Superbike Championship, Silverstone, Datatag Qualifying result:
- Tarran Mackenzie (McAMS Yamaha) 53.549s
- Jason O’Halloran (McAMS Yamaha) +0.054s
- Scott Redding (Be Wiser Ducati) +0.058s
- Josh Elliot (OMG Racing Suzuki) +0.189s
- Luke Mossey (OMG Racing Suzuki) +0.259s
- Dan Linfoot (Santander Salt TAG Yamaha) +0.325s
- Tommy Bridewell (Oxford Racing Ducati) +0.344s
- Christian Iddon (Tyco BMW) +0.532s
- Luke Stapleford (Buildbase Suzuki Suzuki) +0.674s
For more information on the Bennetts British Superbike Championship visit www.britishsuperbike.com
Tarran Mackenzie – McAMS Yamaha
Pole position at Silverstone
“It feels really good to be on pole position as I didn’t have the best pre-season really. I felt good on the bike but I just wasn’t that fast, so coming here after the test I was a bit more confident.
“In Q2 the bike felt perfect so I felt happy going into Q3, I didn’t expect pole position so this is awesome and I can’t wait for tomorrow.”
Scott Redding – Be Wiser Ducati
First Bennetts BSB front row start
“If you are an adrenaline junkie that was exactly what you want to do – for me that was insane! I am used to one qualifying session and then maybe a second one. You don’t want to make a mistake in Q1 but then in Q3 you just close your eyes and go all in.
“That was so much adrenaline and I am super happy with that. I was a bit nervous to start with but this system is amazing as you can get clear laps at the end. I wanted to go for the pole position, that was my mindset and I think how it was for everyone. Unfortunately it wasn’t me today but it is a good start to my season.”
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